University of Groningen

The Master's track History of Architecture and Town Planning (Healthy Cities, New Perspectives on History and Theory of Architecture and Town Planning) explores the evolution of cities, villages and landscapes in Europe within the framework of changing geopolitical conditions at the global scale.

Are you interested how architecture and urbanism can improve our conditions, and how they contribute to public health? Wish to gain knowledge about the global dimension of architectural and urban theories and practices? Starting with a profound historical overview, this track prepares students for an active role in debates and policy-making processes involved in the renaissance of the European city.

It analyses physical and spatial phenomena as historical documents conveying the motives underlying their continuous changes, as instruments to pursue specific policies, and as works of art. Starting with the Enlightenment, and paying attention to issues related to public health, the programme investigates tensions between global and local, gaps between formal and informal, the post-socialist condition in former Eastern Europe, and architectural and urban strategies aiming at sustainable living conditions and their historical precursors. Part of the courses is provided by the Thomassen a Thuessink Chair, a joint venture of Groningen University Medical Center, the University of Groningen and Delft University of Technology; the chair focuses on the public health dimension of urban interventions.

Programme: 1 year

Starting with the European city, this Master's track provides students with the expertise and critical attitude to study both historical and contemporary tendencies in today's global setting. Historians, environmental scientists, architects, urban planners, medical professionals and policymakers may benefit from the courses offered in this track.

The Master has two distinct components. The first semester is organized around a number of courses that foster the intense cooperation between students (historians, architects, environmental scientists, etc.) and staff. The second semester urges the students to develop their personal skills, culminating in individual research projects. Here the personal preferences, skills, and ambitions of the students are embedded in a custom-made programme that includes interaction with a range of different institutions (architectural firms, urban planning boards, healthcare institutions, etc.).

Programme options

History of Architecture and Town planning (track)

The Master's track confronts architectural and urban history and theory of the European city, focusing on the period after 1750, with contemporary urban tendencies at the global scale.

This results in a critical international perspective and the capacity to combine the body of knowledge of various disciplines within an overall historical framework.

Master's Honours Programme (honours program)

The Master's Honours Programme was developed especially for students who want to get more from their studies.

It is a programme worth 15 ECTS that is followed in addition to the standard Master's programme. It is a one-year interdisciplinary programme that is designed to introduce students to various aspects of leadership.

Master's placement (specialization)

During this Master's track, you can follow a placement for ECTS credit points.

It is your responsibility to find a placement yourself, but the Mobility Office can offer help with this where necessary. Click the link above to find examples of placements completed by other Master's students.

Programme schedule

University of Groninger

'Origins of the Healthy City' examines the relationship between healthy cities and urban policies. In 'Research Laboratory and Excursion' students will do research into a specific European city (Prague, Berlin) and present this during an excursion. 'Global Tendencies vs. Local Identities' studies the effects on city design, and the tension between global trends and local identities. 'Typological Exercises' presents a critical overview of thoughts on function (type) and thoughts on form and style.

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is recommended.

Admission requirements

Specific requirements More information language test Minimum language requirements of TOEFL iBT 90 (with a minimum of 21 on all items), or IELTS 6.5 (with a minimum of 6 on all items). ERK level B2 (preferably C1).

Tuition fees 2019-2020

  • EU/EEA students: €2083 full-time
  • non-EU/EEA students: €12500 full-time.

Application deadlines

  • 01 May 2019: Course starts 01 September 2019

Job prospects

The Master's track opens a myriad of career opportunities, in the Netherlands and abroad, as has been proved over the years. For instance:

  • jobs in the field of urban history and consultancy for municipal agencies and scientific institutions.
  • jobs for private or public architectural and urban platforms.
  • jobs in the field of journalism and public relations.
  • the master prepares students for a scientific career.
  • jobs as advisors for healthcare institutions.


Research within History of Architecture and Town Planning concentrates on design, ethics, and aesthetics. Lines of approach include the views and ideas of architects, architectural theory, cultural representation, the history of architecture and urban planning, globalization, construction, and architecture from a socio-economic perspective.

Program taught in:

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Last updated July 5, 2019
This course is Campus based
Start Date
12 months
2,083 EUR
- EU, 12500 EUR. - non-EU per year
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